Wednesday, December 8


I'm emotional this CHRISTmas season as I see God working in our lives.  No matter what we go through I can't help but think how blessed we are.  Two years ago we were going through the hardest time we've ever had to face.  We didn't know what the next second held for our family.  We didn't know if Bradley would ever get to meet his little brother who fought every minute to stay alive, so we waited a long time to tell him about Austin. There were many days that brought much anxiety that Austin may take a turn for the worse and never leave the hospital alive.  Everyday, we're feeling more and living more as we heal from that difficult time in our life.
We're enjoying the kids this CHRISTmas season.  We're very thankful to have a full mantle of stockings, children laughing and playing, and for all the other wonderful things this season brings when you have small children.  We're counting our blessings every minute of everyday.  We just feel such JOY over all of the little things we have to enjoy this season.  So, please be thankful for your blessings.  Be thankful for your healthy children.  Be thankful that your child may just have a cold or something easy to treat like Strep.  Be thankful that your arm is sore from holding your child all the time, becasue he/she is here for you to hold.  Be thankful for the sleepless nights caused by a child, because it won't last forever.  Be thankful that for a crying child.  Be thankful for the messes that you have to clean up caused by your children.  Be thankful for the diapers that must be changed.  Be thankful for the many meals you have to prepare every week.  Be thankful for all the simple things in life that you sometimes may find stressful.  Smile, because your smile may bring other to come and know Christ's love for us.  Don't complain, just be THANKFUL!

A meaningful song to remember as we prepare for this special season.  Just keep it simple, so you can appreciate the reason for the season! 

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the earth, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

Awesome Austin

Anyone that has been following my blog over the years knows of the miracle that God has performed with Austin.  A 24 week triplet just doesn't do as well as him, but what a blessing he has been.  So, I started to let me guard down as he neared his 2nd birthday, the huge milestone that would allow us to stop being so cautious. . .  and then he started to vomit more often. Austin has always vomited a lot and I don't mean spit-up.  He definitely has put a new meaning to the word "vomit". He empties his entire stomach from the last 12 hours or so- it's insane and we've never seen anything like it.  So, we made an appointment and took him to the pediatrician who was a little concerned and ordered a good bit of blood work (celiac disease etc). She also found that he had a sinus and ear infection probably caused by the vomiting. So, we went home and waited for the labs to come back.  Over the next 2 days Austin continued to vomit more often, and the pediatrician decided  to admit him because the blood work showed he was dehydrated.  He was put on observation, fluids, and IV antibiotics.  He had an Endoscopy while in the hospital and the gastroenterologist thought he had a type of allergic esophogitis.  However, those results came back negative.  In the meantime we stopped all dairy and Austin stopped vomiting.  So, we took him to the allergist who did allergy testing and all of that came back negative. So, we're back to not knowing what is going on.  We have added everything back to his diet except milk.  We've done almond milk instead, and he hasn't thrown up in 2.5 weeks which is unheard of with Austin.  Who knows what could be going on.  The doctor did say it could have been a virus, but the problem is he has always vomited.  Needless to say Austin has continued to thrive and be happy through everything.  We have a new EI who will be seeing him biweekly.  And, his speech therapist has started coming weekly to hopefully help his speech delay.  Austin should be saying 2 word phrases and have at least a 100 word vocabulary, but doesn't do either of these things.  The therapists think he is capable as his cognitive abilities seem to be present.  So, we just have to wait for Austin to catch up.  We've seen the pulmonologist who was concerned with Austin's breathing.  So, he was started on an inhaled steroid which may help him gain weight if he was working so hard to breathe.  This is caused by his chronic lung disease that is very similar to a COPD patient.  The pulmonologist also, after much talk with the insurance company got him approved for another season of Synagis shots. He will get the first shot this Friday afternoon and have them once a month through March.
We did celebrate Austin's 2nd birthday in November with a Mickey Mouse Clubhouse party.  He loved it.  He had lots of friends and family help him celebrate. We enjoyed hotdogs, chili, slaw, baked beans, mixed fruit, chips,and a yummy cake.  He received LOTS of wonderful gifts.  He is one lucky boy. 
One thing that I need to add are the restrictions that we're going to continue this winter due to Austin.  The pulmonologist said that a cold could be really bad for Austin due to his chronic lung disease, and that we must still be careful with Austin.  So, if you will be coming to our home please remember these restrictions. Thanks for helping us keep Austin healthy!
- No shoes are allowed in our home.
- No smokers allowed in our home.  If someone is a smoker and wishes to come over they must shower, put on smoke free clothes, and refrain from smoking until after their visit is over.  Smoke can still be absorbed off someones clothes, so that is why we have to be so diligent.
- Please don't come over if you're experiencing cough, chest congestion, fever, runny or stuffy nose.  We did finally get an answer about allergies.  If someone has had a dry cough or clear runny nose for more than 10-14 days then we can assume it's allergies and should be OK around that person.  If the symptoms have just started, then there is no way to know what is going on. 
-Please use the hand sanitizer, in the foyer, after removing your shoes.
-No kissing our family or face to face contact.
After speaking with the pulmonologist we will continue to avoid crowded places where we may be for a prolonged period.  Obviously, Austin is a toddler and can't be kept contained longer than a meal in a restaurant or a run to the store.  In these places, we can sanitize and use the floppy seat cover to limit his exposure.  We don't allow strangers to touch him either.
Thank you all for being so understanding.  This is all such a learning experience for us, and sometimes we have to make decisions based on the individual situation and pray we're making the best choice for Austin and our family.  He is such a God-given miracle and blessing.  Two years ago, after we lost his brother and sister, we endured months of scares.  We didn't share a lot of it, because it was constant.  And, unless someone has been in our situation wouldn't have truly appreciated the journey.  We just want to avoid anything that wouldn't be best for Austin. 
 The Wicker Family celebrating Austin's 2nd Birthday